Investors had two major pieces of news to gnaw on early Tuesday: The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Index rose 12.2% in May, marking the highest year-over-year gain since 2006, and a foreign potash player caused a stir in the industry to knock around some of the business’ biggest names.
The Nasdaq rallied ahead on a technology surge — led by Facebook (FB), which rose more than 6% and was just pennies from its IPO price of $38 during intraday trading — rising 0.48% to close at 3616.47.
Meanwhile, the S&P 500 managed to hang on to a 0.4% gain, closing at 1685.96. The Dow Jones Industrial Average wasn’t as fortunate, closing down fractionally at 15520.59.
An announcement from Russian fertilizer Uralkali — in which the company said it would keep production at full steam despite predicting a major drop in potash prices — crushed industry stocks including Mosaic (MOS, -17.3%) and Potash Corp. (POT, -16.5%) and also took a bite out of Agrium (AGU, -5.4%).
Goodyear Tire & Rubber (GT) jumped ahead nearly 9% after reporting record Q2 earnings of $181 million, which doubled the year-ago period’s results, and adjusted EPS of 76 cents easily hurdled a 48-cent bar. The result came despite sales that declined 5% to $4.89 billion.
Pitney Bowes (PBI) surged ahead by more than 12% to lead the S&P 500 after announcing Apollo Global Management (APO) will purchase its management services business for $400 million, as well as topping second-quarter earnings estimates by 8 cents with 52 cents in EPS. However, Pitney Bowes did lower full-year 2013 earnings guidance.
Cisco (CSCO) inched up after as Piper Jaffray lifted its target price from $28 to $29 per share while maintaining an “overweight” rating. CSCO will release fourth-quarter and full-year results on Aug. 14.
Solar products and services company SunPower (SPWR) also got the benefit of an upgrade, rising 7% as Baird raised its target price from $24 to $33 per share. Sectormates First Solar (FSLR) and Suntech Power (STP) both rose nearly 3% on the day.
Notable earnings releases for Wednesday include Comcast (CMCSA), MasterCard (MA) and Whole Foods (WFM).
- R.R. Donnelley (RRD): Up 16.5% ($2.68) to $18.93.
- Oshkosh Truck (OSK): Up 9.6% ($3.88) to $44.36.
- Harris (HRS): Up 7.8% ($4.14) to $5.97.
- Health Management (HMA): Down 10.9% ($1.62) to $13.30.
- Coach (COH): Down 7.9% ($4.55) to $53.30.
- Spirit Airlines (SAVE): Down 8.31% ($2.94) to $32.45.
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.